MFT Course Descriptions

603: Clinical Research and Program Evaluation (3)
Introduces quantitative and qualitative clinical research methods, including randomized clinical trials, efficacy and effectiveness studies, program evaluation, client outcome, clinician effectiveness, and evidence-based practice strategies. Emphasis placed on conducting research and evaluating outcomes with children, couples, families, diverse clients, and vulnerable populations. Also covers federal, state, and private foundation agendas, systems of access, and channels for funding mental health research.

EPC 643: Diversity in Counseling (3)

Self-assessment of knowledge, sensitivity, and attitudes toward diverse populations, including race, ethnicity, gender, age, socioeconomic status, sexual orientation, spirituality, ability, and language. Examination of family structure and social patterns in California’s ethnic populations and differences across social class. Review of cross-cultural research, theories, interventions, and resources. Emphasis on models of societal oppression, privilege, cross-cultural dynamics, poverty, and social justice, as well as the impact of social stress and prejudice on mental health recovery. Designed for family therapists and mental health counselors in school, college, and community settings.

655: Counseling Theories (3)
Counseling theories and treatment planning, including psychodynamic, humanistic-existential, cognitive-behavioral, feminist, and solution-focused theories, including an examination of the evidence-base and history of the counseling profession. Emphasis placed on applications with diverse populations in community, school, and college settings.

656: Therapy with Children, Adolescents, and their Families (3)

Counseling theories and techniques for working with children, adolescents, and their families, including evidence-base treatments for common childhood disorders, assessment approaches, play and child therapy techniques, child abuse treatment, domestic violence, self-harm and suicide interventions. Also addresses resiliency, Gay-Lesbian-Bisexual-Transgender-Questioning, and diversity issues.

657C: Career Interventions in Mental Health Counseling (3)

Prepares family therapists to assist children, teens, and adults with a wide range of career issues that arise in clinical practice as well as prepare therapists for work in EAP environments. Topics covered include career counseling and development theory, diversity, harassment, and discrimination in the work place, relationship issues in the work place, dual career couples, unemployment and underemployment, and supported employment for the severely mentally ill. Emphasis placed on evidence-based practices and diversity issues.

659A: Practicum: Communication (3)
Communication theory and skills, designed to help students develop greater self-knowledge and become aware of their impact on others through participation in group experiences and peer counseling; emphasis on verbal and non-verbal cues, refinement of basic response skills, and the subtleties of language and style.

659B: Practicum: Skills (3)
Supervised applications of counseling skills in classroom and fieldwork settings, including peer counseling and community counseling sessions. Topics include crisis management and safety planning with suicidal or homicidal clients, child/elder abuse, domestic violence, and self-injury as well as introducing clients to counseling, professional documentation, case management, and community referrals. Students must complete a minimum of 40 hours of direct services with clients.

659P: Fieldwork (3)
Course may be offered for 1-6 units. Supervised training at an approved field site for those specializing in marriage and family counseling. Students must apply for and locate a community placement prior to enrolling. Course covers applied skills in progress notes, clinical assessment, treatment planning, working with supervisors, managing and crisis issues as well as self care and affect regulation techniques. Students must complete a minimum of 50 face-to-face hours to receive credit for the course. Course may be taken up to three times.

659Q: Fieldwork (3)
Supervised training at an approved field site for those specializing in marriage and family therapy/counseling. Students must apply for and locate a community placement prior to enrolling. Course covers applied skills in case conceptualization and use of theories with clients. Students must complete an additional 100 face-to-face hours beyond the 50 required for 659P, of which 20 hours must be group counseling hours, to receive credit for this course. To graduate, students must complete a minimum of 240 face-to-face counseling hours and approximately 360 hours of supervision and other professional activities for a grand total of 600 hours. Students seeing clients after completing this course must register for EPC 690 each semester during which clients are seen.

659R: Fieldwork (1)
Supervised training at an approved field site for those specializing in marriage and family counseling. Students must apply for and locate a community placement prior to enrolling. Course covers applied skills in progress notes, clinical assessment, treatment planning, working with supervisors, managing and crisis issues as well as self care and affect regulation techniques.

670A: Systemic Family Theories and the Evidence Base (3)

Case conceptualization and treatment planning using systemic marriage and family therapy/counseling theories, including structural, strategic, experiential, and intergenerational theories. Addresses the associated evidence base, common factors research, and epistemological foundations of systemic theories. Applications with diverse clients, children, and the severely mentally ill are emphasized.

670B: Postmodern and Cognitive Family Theories and the Evidence Base (3)
Case conceptualization and treatment planning using postmodern and cognitive-behavioral marriage and family therapy/counseling theories, including solution-focused, narrative, collaborative, cognitive-behavioral, and behavioral approaches. Addresses postmodern epistemological and philosphical foundations, the associated evidence base, behavioral parent education, common factors research, and common factors of MFT supervision models. Applications with diverse clients, children, and the severely mentally ill are emphasized.

670C: Psychoeducation and Group Process in Family Counseling (3)
Prepares students to develop and lead psychoeducational and process groups for children and adults diagnosed with a mental health issue as well as multi-family and multi-couple groups for families with members diagnosed with severe mental illness. Emphasis on evidence-based group treatments and diversity issues. Practice guidelines also covered, including confidentiality in group settings, screening members, and mandated group treatment.

671M: Law, Ethics, and Professional Issues in Family Therapy (3)

Laws, ethical decision-making, professional identity, professional advocacy, mandated reporting, and licensing requirements that relate to marriage and family therapists and professional counselors in California. Emphasis on differing ethical practices across contexts, including recovery-oriented public mental health, as well as ethical issues related to working with and advocating for diverse clients and collaborating with other professionals. The ethics codes of AAMFT, ACA, and CAMFT will be contrasted and compared.

672: Mental Health Diagnosis (3)
Clinical assessment and diagnosis of adults and children manifesting mild to severe mental disorders and includes training in the mental status examination, use of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, co-occurring disorders, and recovery-oriented prognosis for severe mental illness. Emphasis on diversity and socioeconomic issues as well as evidence-based treatments and best practices.

673: Community Mental Health (3)

Theories and skills required in contemporary community mental health settings, including recovery-oriented treatment for severe mental illness, disaster and trauma response, services for victims of abuse and the homeless, foster care, case management, client advocacy, in-home and in-school services, bilingual client services, collaborating with other professionals, medical family therapy, and local community service resources. Provides a practical overview of public and private systems of care and opportunities to meet with the severely mentally ill and their families.

674: Family Development Across the Lifespan (3)
Course enables students to use information about healthy functioning to help individuals, couples, and families reach developmental milestones and effectively transition through stages of individual and family development. Topics covered include family life cycle issues, such as marriage, childbirth, child rearing, parenting, divorce, step-parenting, alternative family forms, aging, long-term care, end of life, and grief counseling. In addition, health, resiliency, and wellness models and psychosocial developmental processes covered as well as the effects of diversity and socioeconomic issues on individual and family development. Emphasis on evidence-based practices.

675: Chemical Dependency and Addictions Counseling (3)
Major approaches for identifying, evaluating, diagnosing, and treating persons with alcohol and substance abuse or dependency, co-occurring disorders, and behavioral addictions. Topics include the effects of psychoactive drug use, theories of the etiology of addiction, systemic dynamics of alcoholic and substance abusing families, legal requirements, community resources for individual teens, adults, and their families, prevention of addiction, harm reduction models, evidence-based models for couple and family treatment, recovery models, peer support models, and motivational interviewing.

677: Couple and Sex Therapy (3)
Advanced theories and techniques for working with couples, including evidence-based treatment, research on successful marriages and divorce, premarital counseling, gay and lesbian couples, psychosexual dysfunction, integrated sex-marital therapy, co-parenting after divorce, and multicultural couples. Emphasis on assessing for violence and addressing safety issues with couples experiencing domestic violence.

678: Psychopharmacology and Neurobiological Foundations (3)

Introduces students to the neurobiological foundations of family therapy, including an overview of sexual dysfunction, interpersonal neurobiology, and effects of trauma. Covers biochemical theories of mental disorders and the various classes of psychoactive medications used to treat these disorders across the lifespan. Particular attention given to utilization patterns based on sex, socioeconomic status, ethnicity, and other diversity factors. Emphasis on the role of family therapists in the assessment, referral, and management of clients being treated with psychotropic medication.

679: Clinical and Outcome-Based Assessments (3)

Introduces students to contemporary and outcome-based assessment in marriage and family therapy. Covers commonly used assessments related to mental health diagnosis, child functioning, couple functioning, family functioning, forensics, client outcome, therapeutic alliance, and therapist effectiveness. Emphasis on evidence-based practices and diversity issues. Course requires that students measure client progress and therapeutic alliance in their field settings or approved equivalent.

690: Professional Development and Practice in the Field (1, 2, or 3 units; optional; as needed to complete field practice)

May be offered for 1-3 units. Students registering for this class must be placed in an approved fieldwork setting prior to enrolling. Course required by state licensing board for MFT and Counseling trainees each fall, spring, and summer semester when students are seeing clients and not enrolled in another fieldwork class. Topics covered include post-degree professional development, vitae development, internship registration, internship placement, license exam preparation, therapist self care, private practice, supervision, and career development. May be taken up to 6 times as needed to complete the degree; further enrollment requires the approval of the program coordinator.

697 Comprehensive Exams (3) and 695WC (3; taken semester prior to begin writing papers)

698 Thesis/Project (3-6)